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Work Flow Structure: An Analysis for Planning and Control

Author

Listed:
  • William K. Holstein

    (Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University)

  • William L. Berry

    (Krannert Graduate School of Industrial Administration, Purdue University)

Abstract

This paper has two purposes: (1) to propose a new way of conceptualizing job-shop-like manufacturing systems and (2) to suggest how this conceptualization might be applied in the development of planning and control procedures. The concept of "work flow structure" is developed and methods for determining this structure from a sample of job routings or a routing transition matrix are described. Two key notions used to define work flow structure are "paths" of work flow and the relative activity levels or throughput volumes of processing units in the system. Sample results are presented from the application of these methods to data from a large machine shop. The final section of the paper suggests a number of ways in which work flow structure information might be used in procedures for production planning and control. The application areas discussed include product mix planning, capacity planning, personnel assignment, work releasing and dispatching.

Suggested Citation

  • William K. Holstein & William L. Berry, 1970. "Work Flow Structure: An Analysis for Planning and Control," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 16(6), pages 324-336, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:16:y:1970:i:6:p:b324-b336
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.16.6.B324
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. M. E. Salveson, 1956. "A Problem in Optimal Machine Loading," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 2(3), pages 232-260, April.
    2. M. Beckman & R. Muth, 1956. "An Inventory Policy for a Case of Lagged Delivery," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 2(2), pages 145-155, January.
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